Friday, September 07, 2018

Divide and Conquer!

The best way to keep your perennials in check is by dividing ’em. This will keep overgrown plants from taking over your whole backyard, reduce overcrowding, and eliminate any old or weak growth. And guess what? Early fall is the best season for dividing! So get started as soon as possible, using the 6-step to-do list below:
  1. Cut all the top growth back by half, and dig up the roots.
  2. Gently tease or break clumps of the plants apart, or cut them with a sharp knife or spade. Make sure each new piece has at least one bud or stem and some roots.
  3. Treat each divided perennial to our Transplant Tonic: In a 5-gallon bucket, mix 1 can of beer, ¼ cup of instant tea granules, 2 tbsp. of dishwashing liquid, and 2 gallons of water. Let the plants soak in the mix for about 10 minutes or so.
  4. Have a perennial exchange with your neighbors, where you can trade your divisions for a bounty of fresh new plants! (Or, skip to Step 6.)
  5. Plant your perennials in their new location using compost-enriched soil. Give ’em a good watering, then dribble any leftover Transplant Tonic around each plant for an extra boost. By next spring, they’ll be growin’ strong!
For even more garden grow-how, check out our bestselling book, Terrific Garden Tonics! It’s filled with hundreds of Jerry's world-famous solutions to give you the lush lawn, beautiful blooms, and gorgeous garden of your dreams. And you can try it FREE for 21 days with our Free Preview!

Friday, August 31, 2018

Give an Ant Army the Boot

Are you up to your elbows in ants? If the little buggers seem to be everywhere lately—from your pantry to your garage to your garden—here’s what you can do to say "bug off!" and avoid future invasions:

A soapy solution. When anthills make a mess of your lawn, mix ¼ cup of liquid hand soap with 1 gallon of water in a bucket, and pour it over the mounds. Repeat the procedure about an hour later.
Bait ‘em with honey. Mix 1/2 cup of honey, 3/8 cup of baker’s yeast, and 3/8 cup of sugar in a bowl. Spread the mix on bottle caps or pieces of plastic or cardboard, and set the traps in the ants’ pathways.
Call in the cukes. Ants aren’t fans of cucumbers. So lay cucumber peels in their pathways to keep them from invading.
Chalk it up. If ants are all over your trees, shrubs, or flowerbeds, sprinkle powdered chalk on the ground around the trunk or the whole planting bed. If it’s your shed or garage they won’t stay out of, sprinkle the chalk around the door and window frames.
Fortify the front line. Ants won’t cross a line of talcum powder. So use it at the entrance to your pantry, your front and back doors, and anywhere else you don’t want them to go.
Offer some refresh-mint. Keep ants out of your house by laying sprigs of fresh mint in front of your doors, windows, and any cracks or holes that the ants could sneak through.

For more bug battling, pest-repelling quick-tricks, check out our bestselling book, Critter Control & Pest Prevention. You can even try it FREE for 21 days with our Free Preview!

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Friday, August 24, 2018

9 Ways to Save on Groceries

Want more money in your pocket? Then these nine thrifty tips are for you! Here’s how to save big bucks at the grocery store every time you shop:
  1. Make a grocery list, and stick to it. No impulse buying.
  2. Shop alone whenever possible. It will cut down on distractions.
  3. Never shop hungry. A quick snack before you enter the store will keep you focused on the stuff you need, not on what you crave.
  4. Carry your coupons.
  5. Choose larger-size items (a.k.a. value sizes) only if the unit price indicates that it’s a better deal than smaller-size packages.
  6. Buy generics. “Premium” store brands are the best quality for the lowest price. They are comparable to gourmet brands but cost 25% less.
  7. Cash is king. Leave your credit and debit cards at home, and only bring the amount of cash that you are planning to spend.
  8. Take a look at circulars and newspaper inserts every week for specials and sales.
  9. Check with your supermarket to see if you qualify for a senior discount, depending on your age. If you do, you may be able to save up to 10% on your groceries if you shop on a certain day of the week.
Then check out our brand-new book, Live Rich, Spend Smart, and Enjoy Your Retirement! For everything from travel expenses to healthcare costs to your water bill, you’ll learn how to live large on a penny pincher’s budget. And you can even try it FREE for 21 days with our Free Preview!

Friday, August 17, 2018

6 Tricks to Prevent the Travel Sicks

When you’re on vacation, don’t let motion sickness spoil your good time! If you tend to turn green in a car or suffer from seasickness on a boat, then these tips have your name written all over them: 

Book the bigger ship. Try a big ship cruise, rather than that romantic bareboat charter. The bigger the boat, the more stable it is in the water. And that will make you feel more stable, too.
Carefully select your seat. Sit in the most stable section of a moving vehicle—midship on a boat, the middle of a bus, over the wings in a plane, the first car of a train, and the front seat of a car.
Face forward. Don’t ride backward on a train or a boat. If you face forward, you’re more likely to prevent motion sickness.
Ban odor. Avoid strong odors as much as possible before and during trips. On road trips, don’t get in the car with fast food. And keep the fresh air flowing. If you are sealed up in a plane, make sure the air vent over your seat is working.
Don’t read. Reading while in motion can make you queasy, so don’t follow the trip’s progress by staring at the map or pass the time by delving into a book.
Calm the queasiness. If, no matter how hard you try, you still wind up with an upset stomach, try these quick tricks to soothe it:
  • Sip only clear liquids such as ginger ale, plain water, or soothing teas.
  • Make ginger tea by boiling a quarter-size piece of ginger in 1 cup of water for 5 minutes.
  • Grab an uncut lemon, and scratch into the peel. Now sniff the clean, fresh citrus scent.
  • When your appetite returns, opt for bland food, such as applesauce, plain rice, or dry toast.
  • Note: If your nausea is accompanied by chest pain, sweating, or shortness of breath, call your doctor right away. These symptoms could indicate a heart attack.

For more quick cures and travel tips, check out our bestselling book, Live Rich, Spend Smart, and Enjoy Your Retirement! You can even try it FREE for a full 21 days with our Free Preview!

Friday, August 10, 2018

4 Steps to Fabulous Flowers

What would you say if we told you there’s a no-sweat, no-dig way to have a fabulous perennial garden in less than one year? You’d better believe it, because it’s true! And here’s how:
  1. In late summer (ahem, that’s right now!), stake out the site where you want your new bed, then cover the area with a 1-inch-thick layer of newspapers. 
  2. Place a few rocks over the papers to hold them down, and soak the area thoroughly. Water again as needed over the next few weeks to keep the papers moist. 
  3. Once fall has arrived, remove the rocks, then spread 6 to 8 inches of leaves over the area. Top that with 8 to 12 inches of good soil or compost.
  4. All winter, sit back, and let the ingredients settle in. By the time the following spring has begun, you’ll have a loose, fluffy flower bed that’ll be a joy for you to plant in—and for your perennials to grow in! 
There are hundreds more terrific tips to get fancier flowers and brighter blooms in our bestselling book, Flower Garden Problem Solver. You can even try it FREE for 21 days with our Free Preview! Then, check out our Facebook page, and be sure to follow us!

Friday, August 03, 2018

Eight Great Harvesting Hints for Your Garden

You’ve been hard at work in your garden all summer long, and now you’re finally ready to enjoy the fruits—and veggies—of your labor. But if you’re not sure whether something is ready to pick or not, be on the lookout for these clues:

Color. Fleshy-fruited veggies like tomatoes, peppers, winter squash, and pumpkins turn color as they ripen. Read your seed packet or catalog description carefully so you know what color to look for (it’s not always what you might expect!).

Gloss. Healthy, growing veggies are shiny and glossy. If their skin is dull, you’ve waited too long. Watermelon is the exception to this rule: When it’s ripe, its skin is dull.

Size. Lots of vegetable crops, including peppers, potatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and leafy greens, are ready to eat whenever they look like they are. If you don’t think you can trust your eyes, then just take a bite. Your taste buds don’t lie.

When you’ve determined it’s time to bring in your bounty, here are a few more guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Try to pick your vegetables in the morning, when their sugar content is highest. 
  • If the plants are wet, give them time to dry off. (Wet plants are more likely to spread disease.)
  • Take your time and work carefully, because bruised or scratched vegetables spoil quickly, and damaged plants are sitting ducks for pests and diseases. 
  • Use your fingers to pick thin-stemmed vegetables like peas and beans, and ones that slip easily from the vine like tomatoes.
  • Use a sharp knife or clippers to cut tough- or brittle-stemmed crops. Veggies like cabbage, peppers, broccoli, eggplant, and squash can be damaged badly if you try to pull or tear them from their stems.

For more bug-bustin’, garden-growin’, weed-whackin’, harvest-helpin’ magic, check out my Supermarket Super Gardens book! It’s filled with terrific tips that’ll help you whip even the saddest yard into tip-top shape. You can even try it out for a full 21 days with our Free Preview! Then, check out our Facebook page, and make sure to follow us!

Friday, July 27, 2018

Bug Off!

This week, we’re going to show you a really effective insect repellent recipe from our Supermarket Super Gardens book. Have you been looking for one that doesn’t contain toxic chemicals? Look no further! Bugs hate this formula, but it’s safe enough to spray on kids. And, it’s a snap to make. Here’s how: 
  • Put ½ cup each of fresh mint, lavender, thyme, and rose-scented geraniums in a bowl.
  • Heat 1 cup of white vinegar just to the boiling point, and pour it over the herbs.
  • Cover the bowl, and let the herbs steep until the vinegar has cooled to room temperature.
  • Strain out the solids and pour the liquid into a handheld sprayer bottle. 
Spritz all of your exposed skin with the potion before you head outdoors, and reapply it every couple of hours. Annoying bugs will bug you no more! (Note: Store your repellent in the refrigerator, where it will keep for about two months.) 

And here’s a few more clever ways to keep bugs at bay when you’re grillin’ or chillin’ in your backyard: 
  • When you’re kicking back in the shade of a tree, sipping a nice, cool drink, don’t share it with a bunch of bugs. Just cover the top of your glass with aluminum foil, poke a hole in it, and push a straw through the hole. Then sip to your heart’s content!
  • Bees and skeeters both flee from the odor of scented dryer sheets. So before you head outside in the good old summertime, tie one of these aromatic squares through one of your belt loops or buttonholes. 
  • Toss a handful of sage or rosemary onto the coals of your barbecue. You’ll keep the biters at bay and spice up your chow at the same time! 
  • Smooth a bit of mentholated rub onto your arms, legs, and neck before you head out to your garden. It’ll fend off ticks, mosquitoes, and other biting bugs. 
  • Rub a slice of raw onion over your exposed skin, and the bitin’ bugs will give you the cold shoulder. (But then again, so will your friends and family!)
For more bug-bustin’, garden-growin’, weed-whackin’ magic, check out our Supermarket Super Gardens book! It’s filled with terrific tips that’ll help you whip even the saddest yard into tip-top shape. You can even try it out for a full 21 days with our Free Preview! Then, check out our Facebook page, and make sure to follow us!